Michelle reads words accurately, but she can't comprehend the content. She has difficulty connecting to language she reads or language she hears. Words seem to go in one ear and out the other. She cannot hold information in short term or long term memory. People think she is not trying, and she has been labeled as "attention deficit."



A primary cause of language comprehension problems is difficulty creating an imagined gestalt. This is called weak concept imagery. This weakness causes individuals to get only "parts," such as a few facts or details, rather than the whole picture. Individuals with weak concept imagery have difficulty with reading comprehension and critical thinking, and may struggle with following directions or conversations. They may also have difficulty expressing ideas in an organized manner. If they read well but are severely unable to comprehend, they may be labeled hyperlexic. If they don't receive or express language well, they could be diagnosed on the autistic spectrum.



Individuals of all ages may experience the symptoms of an undiagnosed and untreated concept imagery dysfunction.

This causes weakness in:

  • Reading comprehension
  • Listening comprehension
  • Critical thinking and problem solving
  • Following directions
  • Memory
  • Oral language expression
  • Written language expression
  • Grasping humor
  • Interpreting social situations
  • Understanding cause and effect


    The Visualizing & Verbalizing® (V/V®) program develops concept imagery—the ability to create an imagined gestalt from language—as a basis for comprehension and higher order thinking. The development of concept imagery improves reading and listening comprehension, memory, oral vocabulary, critical thinking, and writing.


    The Visualizing & Verbalizing (V/V) Difference


    V/V is "making movies in your mind while you read." Unlike traditional comprehension strategies that only benefit students with independent learning skills, V/V addresses the underlying sensory-cognitive processes necessary to develop independence in learning.


    Who is A Visualizing & Verbalizing STUDENT?


    Students of all ages and learning abilities can benefit, including students with learning disabilities, English Learners, and struggling readers. Click here to see new research on V/V instruction with students with autism.


    Response to Intervention (RtI)


    V/V is used successfully as a Tier 2 and 3 intervention for students struggling to learn core content. Often students lack the underlying skill of concept imagery that they need in order to benefit from subsequent comprehension instruction. V/V is also used in Tier 1 to enhance instruction in the core language arts curriculum and content areas.


    Common Core


    V/V develops the skills and habits students need to meet the expectations in the strands of Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening, and Language. The steps of V/V prepare students to grapple with complex and informational text. V/V develops the imagery-language connection necessary for close reading, and provides a foundation for developing academic vocabulary. Download our free White Paper to learn how V/V supports the Common Core.


    English Language Learners


    V/V supports best practices in English Language Development in an explicit and systematic manner. English learners are given frequent opportunities to develop oral language skills. V/V lessons are scaffolded and differentiated to help build background knowledge. V/V provides multiple opportunities for students to interact with vocabulary and content.